Why is My Dishwasher Not Draining?

No-one wishes to open their machine and discover standing water but, don’t panic just yet. You might manage solve the problem by yourself, without having to call a repair person or invest in a new machine.

Your machine refusing to drain can have multiple of causes a number of which are easy to rectify. So, before you call a dishwasher repair service here is a lineup of possible things you can identify on your own. Some of which are not even related to the machine itself.

Ensure the dishwasher wasn’t interrupted mid-cycle

It is possible that there is nothing stopping your machine from draining. Rather, the program may have been cut short.

The cycle might have been stopped mid-way for multiple of reasons. Little fingers pressing controls, inadvertently pushing on the buttons, a power surge or opening the dishwasher mid-program might all stop the cycle from completing and mean your dishwasher doesn’t drain.

If you think this might be the circumstance, or you feel it may be worthwhile checking run your dishwasher again on a quick cycle.

Some dishwashers could have an empty function so it’s well worth consulting your instruction manual or consulting google to find out.

Examine the disposal

If your dishwasher is plumbed into the waste disposal inspect this before you do anything else as a blocked garbage disposal will block your dishwasher from draining. Turn on the disposal with fast running water to ensure there are no issues.

If you do uncover a blockage drain unclogger or a plunger could be sought after to unclog the blockage and so this could resolve the issue.

Examine the sink waste for issues

If you sink is draining reluctantly this may indicate a plumbing issue rather than an error with your machine.

In the case that the kitchen sink is draining reluctantly you can try putting some bicarb and white vinegar down the plughole, leaving it for a few minutes and subsequently flushing it away with hot water.

A sink plunger could also be employed to attempt to remove the blockage.

This could be all you need to do to allow your appliance to drain so run a quick rinse and empty cycle to check. If this hasn’t worked you may remove the water by hand using a bowl and also a towel and have a look at a few more possible issues.

Make sure you unplug the dishwasher to prevent electrocution.

If in the process of any of these investigations you believe you may have discovered and solved the error there is no need to continue to the next step. Just start an empty cycle to check your machine is repaired.

Inspect and clean the filters

Any number of things could block the filters including corn kernels, labels from containers, plastic film covers and smashed glass. Clear plastic lids could also be difficult to spot if you don’t look closely.

Take out the filter then give it a thorough scrub before replacing it. Not all machines have their filter in the same place so you might need to look at the instructions for this.

Is the waste water hose blocked?

The next component to check is the waste water pipe. Many things could cause a blockage including a build up of food debris, a kink in the hose, or a crushed hose. All of which may all stop your dishwasher from draining.

Subject to the location of the waste hose (generally the ribbed one) you might be able to look at it by taking off the base or you could need to pull the dishwasher out from the wall.

Have a look at the hose in the first instance to find out if there are any kinks or it’s been squashed. You may have the means to fix these issues by hand which will most likely deal with the issue, however, be aware that once this has occurred the chance of it happening again is massively increased so you may wish to buy a spare hose.

If you can’t see an issue you may remove the waste hose from the machine and blow into it to check for any blockages. Be sure to put down newspaper or towels first as even if you have emptied the dishwasher there could still be dirty water in the hose.

If you are unable to blow through the hose this could be the issue.

Take off the hose at the sink end and give it a good flush through to remove the blockage. If you are unable to dislodge the obstruction or the pipe is cracked or damaged invest in a brand-new one. If you could clear the blockage then replace the hose and start a short program to double check that you have repaired the problem.

You could also examine where the waste pipe connects to the waste disposal. This is a common point for debris to build up so if you do remove the pipe give this point a thorough clean as well.

Examine the drain valve

You may inspect the drain valve by hand to ensure it hasn’t seized. The drain valve will most often be situated in the bottom of the dishwasher on the valve bracket. Check your instruction manual if you’re unsure.

Depressing the valve or giving it a wiggle should be adequate to let you know if it’s stuck. If you can see anything blocking it carefully extract this. If you are unable to, this might be when you should call a repair person unless you are happy in ordering and swapping out the component yourself.

Examine your pump is not blocked

Your dishwasher pump makes use of impellers that could become blocked by pieces of china or other debris. Check your pump isn’t obstructed by taking off the safety cover and checking that the impellers can rotate freely.

Listen to your dishwasher while it’s on

If it is making funny noises your pump or motor could be broken and need to be repaired.

Call a plumber

If you have been through the above list and the fault remains, or you think the pump, pump valve or motor are damaged, it might be the moment you need to call in the professionals.

At least having tried to troubleshoot you have prevented having to pay a hefty call-out fee for a blocked drain.

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